In other to restore normalcy in Portland, Oregon, riot police turned out in force to quell unrest by supporters and opponents of President trump at contentious political rallies, after a week of racially motivated killings that shook the city.

The Trump Free Speech Rally pulled thousands of demonstrators to a public square close to the City Hall, where a crowd of people thronged to counter-demonstrations and onlookers assembled on three sides of the park in a fierce confrontation that turned tense.

Trump supporters and anti-Trump clash

Hundreds of black-clad, anti-Trump Trump demonstrators waved a flag of “Antifascist Action” while other groups on the opposing side chanted different slogans and waved their inscriptions on their placards.

A group of helmeted policemen took up strategic positions to separate the two sides, dismantled scuffles and arresting protesters who were seen crossing police lines to move to the other side.

According to the police, 14 arrests were made throughout the day. Photos of weapons seized from protesters included brass knuckles, a hunting knife, clubs, a slingshot, roadside flares and many other locally made shields. These were displayed on Twitter by the police. There were no reports of anyone sustaining injury, however.

Calming the situation

Tempers and shoving characterized the marches that flared periodically, but security agents ensured that violence did not fully erupt. Later in the day, as soon as the Pro Trump rally was winding up, police ordered counter protesters to immediately disperse to the adjoining parks.

This resulted in the hurling of rocks and other dangerous weapons at police officers by some people in the crowd.

Law enforcement agents responded by firing rounds of “pepper ball.” Police had earlier said the protesters were seen removing bricks from the outside of a public restroom.

Arrests by the police

The face-off wound down after officers cordoned a group of about 200 people on a nearby street.

Each was photographed and asked to present their identification before being allowed to leave.

Portland was already tense following last week’s incident where a man chanting religious and racial slurs at two young women on a commuter train stabbed three people who came to the girl’s rescue, leading to the death of two.

One of the teenage girls who was attacked by the assailant was black and the other was wearing a Muslim hijab and head scarf.

35 year old Jeremy Christian who has a criminal record of felony, was arrested and charged with assault and murder in the attack that took place on May 26, which President Donald Trump as described as “unacceptable.” He saluted the victims for standing up against hate and religious intolerance.